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Forthcoming changes in the next content patch 9.97

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Just now, Mike the Mongel said:

Since we prob will not see the end to player fleets, which both sides on this matter have a point, why not limit it to Cutter up to the Frigate class (not including the Frigates) and the Trader ships (if you man a trader type) 3 ships can be in fleet, if you in a Frigate and above no more than 1 ship allowed in a fleet....this could be coded in yes ?

This can help cut it down some.

there was a time when the max fleet was 2x Snow

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6 hours ago, admin said:

Captains

We would like to share the features we are working on. Features are to be delivered in the next content patch.

During this early access we have found that some features that are realistic (and demanded by players for testing) are later found out to be less fun than the previous implementation. Early access is the only time to test all ideas and cut them if they are not fun. So hang on there - we will be fast and ruthless in cutting things that don't work. 

Feature list that will get in

Land in port battles.

  • This is an experimental feature and might make port battles better or might actually make it worse.
  • Port battles will be run in the harbor of the regional capital of that region.
  • Instead of tower and BR difference requirements, there will be 3 objectives.
  • Controlling objectives gives your side points. If you played conquest mode in Battlefiled 3 you will understand how it works.
  • 3 objectives will be at certain distance from each other sometimes forcing fleets to split up and coordinate. Faster, lighter ships importance will increase.
  • Potential griefing and kiting will be completely eliminated. You won't care if your opponent is kiting you - capture and control 2 objectives and you will eventually win.
  • The only drawback found in testing is this - land changes combat completely and in some cases will slow them down depending on the harbor. Some harbors will be very hard to capture due to their natural composition.
  • Port entry will change and both attackers and defenders will spawn based on their OW position. We don't know about the wind yet but maybe the wind should be taken from the OW forcing attackers to carefully choose the time for attack. 

Global events 

  • PVE challenge. New lobby event focused exclusively on killing NPC ships. Players will have limited time to sink as many opponents as they can (on a pre-selected ship). Event will run weeky (or for several days) depending on the testing results. Top 10 players will be rewarded by ship redeemables, upgrades, rare materials and paint customizations. Ship which can be used in events will change every event. 
  • PVP challenge. Open world map events focused exclusively on sinking players. A special area will be designated for PVP events and will run 3 times per day for Far East, EU and US prime times for several hours. Kills (victories) will be counted for players fighting in that zone. Players who gain leaderboard positions in their respective time zones will be rewarded by ship redeemables, upgrades, rare materials and /or paint customizations. Proposed initial locations for pvp challenge: shallow - Bahamas sand bank above Cuba (2 free towns north and south), deep water - hispaniola channel (3 free towns north south and west).

Crew damage changes

  • It is not logical that all crew can be killed by ball or grape (for some of the sailors are on the masts and yards). We have returned the old sea trials thresholds of 30 and 10%. After you kill 70% of enemy crew it will be harder and harder to inflict more casualties. After losses reach 90% crew damage becomes impossible. The cannonball damage is still under review.
  • Brace is added for testing. Brace allows you to give a take cover command to your crew that will act a s crew shock severely limiting crew casualties, but blocking some of the actions you could do while you are on brace. Brace will stop reload, affect firing ability, stop repairs and water pumping and rudder usage. You will still be able to use yards. 

Possible features (might not make it)

Admiralty store.

  • New currency will be added and will be granted for PvP victories and successful port attack or defense. In its basic implementation players will be able to use this currency to buy rare materials and upgrades. 

Other changes

  • We think that fine woods and ship crafting in general forced players to fight less and sail and craft more. The changes we implemented last patch were based on player proposals and we all thought that they will make the crafting more challenging and provide more options for conquest goals. Testing shown that might have just sucked out all time from PVP and increased the risk levels forcing some players to sail safer.
  • ROE changes. We believe that the final ROE should be a combination of the old roe and new 2 circles system. But with adjustments. 
  • Social perk will return for testing in another form - allowing entry to the weaker side until the battle is balanced.

ETA - End of November.

Discuss

Thanks Devs/Admin; really good to have the communication on what you are working on for the coming 9.97 Patch. :)

 

Looking forward to testing the Land in PB's; looks interesting and the 3 Objective concept could work.

Like the idea of promoting more PvP with the Challenge concept.

Personally really pleased to see that you are going to rebalance the Crew Damage model; makes sense to me as it is a bit over the top atm. What you've intimated in how you're going to do that with the rollback to prior model sounds good.

I like the idea of Admiralty store/currency that promotes PvP to get that benefit in the game.

As I've stated previously I am ok with the fine woods having come into the game. I think they should stay. Maybe a good solution would be Fine Woods required on crafting of all levels of SOL's, but on other ships on Exceptionals only, or something like that; ie a modified fine woods system.

Bringing OW wind into the PB's/PvP battles would be good, total nonsense that the wind doesn't change direction.

Overall, to me it appears you ARE listening to the player base and your very starting comments show that as well as that you are understanding that the game has lost some fun element with the time sink etc from Patch 9.96 and that having tested it you are now moving the game back towards more PvP and more fun for all of us.

Personally, I'm really happy with your general outline for 9.97; looks like you guys are on to it! Thanks!!!!! :)

 

 

 

Edited by PaladinFX

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  1. you desperately need to change hostility system to be focused around PvP more, and to make war supply delivery challenging. Right now it's tedious and not fun work. I'm disappointed it's not in patch notes
  2. Crafting bonuses are a good incentive for capturing ports. You could make it so that once you capture a port, you can use it's regional bonus anywhere. This would allow for capital to be trade hub, which in general is good. Some crafting bonuses are too powerful though, almost eliminating factions that don't have them from RvR. Eg. strong hull and national bonuses should be nerfed. They should be an addition, not a factor defining battles
  3. brace should have at least 2 minute cooldown
  4. if you remove fine wood (which is good), please make sure that at least 1st rates are harder to get. It's a good thing that sinking 1st rates, even without capturing ports, is a viable tactic. It increases epicness of the game. Other ships can be easier to craft.
  5. PvP zones can promote uneven battles and ganking fleets. It would be great if there was a mechanism promoting even PvP combat in OW as well. Now how to do this without a lobby - it's a real question :) Some special hostility events for smaller fleets could be a solution - a player-triggered mechanism similar to port battle, however eg. with a few different BR limits.
Edited by vazco
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1 hour ago, Hodo said:

its playable now.  And still fun... but I guess some people haven't dealt with real hardcore games like I have in the past.

yeah so playable that 70% of pvper stopped, also pve doesnt count   

 

if they not fix forts-towers- supercircle and  aggression all of the rest is pointless.        Nobody care if there is land in a pb or capture the flag, is how you arrive to the pb that is the issue, the inability to control who join it, so the impossibility for an organized force to do a pb withouth randoms interfer + forced pve that need to be adressed

 

At list with flags we organized the fleet buy flag and go. 

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5 hours ago, admin said:

because players want it :). We work on player suggestions just check the topic below. all features voted by players were done. Yet we still see a lot of unhappiness on the forum :)

This is a mistake. You should instead set goals for the game, and implement only suggestions that get you closer to those goals. It's for you to define them. The ones that I hear the most are:

  1. less time sink (you will sell more copies)
  2. more PvP encounters with fair combat (similar BR), with varied ships
  3. large risk/reward when fighting in first rates
  4. purposefullness in OW, to give players something meaningful to do in RvR
  5. PvP players shouldn't be forced to PvE, and other way around

You can define your own goals of course :)

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Personally if the idea people want is to have more pvp then what if you limited the ranks that you can gain solely from pve yes some people will dislike this but the fact is back then there was around about and im partly guessing the percentage here but 20 commanders (captain of brigs/sloops/shallow draft men of war) to 1 post captain(frigates and small ships of the line about  64 guns), Then there was even less flag captains and admirals. this is mostly from what i heard of the royal navy at the time.

If you made it so that from commander + you need to do pvp then that would in my opinion give players a reason to come back to the game, those here to sail around and look for other players and probably new people coming to the game.

For additional ways on top of this you could in crease the ranks above rear admiral and have 1 final rank that players are voted in to by there peers however conditions need to be met in order to be in the running to be voted in such as hostility caused, players sunk etc.

Another thing to get players pvping and back to the game is by giving them something to work for that is a challenge and fun.

The final rank idea could allow players to create missions for there peers such as patrols, trade escort/dilivery, player hunting, raiding areas where the nation sees as the next conquest area etc.

Honnarry titles such as Sir being assigned after events or conditions are met such as a defeating 3 players of the same or better ship than yourself and living to tell the tale (wont always be the same condition etc) and these increase your rank by 1 then give you a extra bit of gold and xp from battles. These titles are reset each month and players that got one have to find a different condition to the previous month to regain there tittle.

You could incorporate these or some of this into the pvp events.

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So, originally I posted this almost a year ago but believe a lot of it is still relevant to today's game.....

 

 

 

Posted November 27, 2015 · Report post

 

Some steps I think that would help alleviate the situation now and hopefully when it goes EA and we have lots more people!

 

1. Why not adjust the idea of regional capitals into something along the lines of major Naval Shipyards where the production of larger ships need to be built? I don't think it is an unreasonable expectation that a 1st rate needs to be produced in a port with major facilities and not and just any old port of which we have hundreds. By making a finite number of ports qualified to build larger ships automatically increases the strategic value of these ports and helps to focus players into these zones. Conquering these ports as well as defending them becomes very important to the entire nation. Flipping these ports should require at least a 24 hour warning window for the defensive nation to prepare...this has been mentioned by others not just me.

 

2. Rework the trade routes that the NPC traders take so that they converge into these shipyards. If we could actually get a system where the number of resources available for purchase by players was determined by these "shipments" it would be amazing. This feature alone gives players a "purpose" by defending these shipping lanes, or raiding these lanes, or conducting an actual blockade aimed at reducing the war effort of this ports nation. Pirates could actually maybe be pirates and make a living off raiding instead of just flying a different colored flag. I would also have the level of a ports defenses and readiness tied to the level of supplies it is receiving versus a number that it consumes. A well supplied port would have the highest fortifications and supplies and be a tough nut to crack. Conversely, one that has been starved of supplies for an extended period of time will be much weaker. This again helps to focus people into relevant war zones as it would be rather easy to see when a nation is making a concerted effort to weaken a port it plans to attack through attrition. This inherently helps to minimize the frustration and challenges of dealing with night flips. Also makes being a blockade runner or smuggler kind of a cool job!

 

3. Establish a trade route network between ports that includes trade hubs. Think of a series of select ports that are major hubs of commerce. NPC ships carrying resources would leave many of the far flung smaller ports and head to these hubs where perhaps their goods are transferred to larger merchant ships to head to the larger ports and shipyards. Encounter Missions could be issued from these hubs such as escort large convoy of merchant ships to major shipyard. Reward for doing this could be scaled by distance of escort mission and if it is successful. The mechanics of having a fleet is already in place in game as well as the encounter mission feature. Again, we are helping to congregate players into strategic areas of the map while giving "purpose" to players of that nation. This also has a great side benefit of promoting nations to push a front line port by port instead of trying to pick one that is in the middle of enemy "territory". While nothing specific stops them from targeting the port it would be extremely hard to keep it since there wouldn't be any establish trade routes to supply it, see point #2.

 

4. Allow nations to make alliances that have real tangible benefits. Such as a formal alliance would allow nations to share trade routes. If USA has access to more production centers with live oak,for example,and they make an alliance with nearby Spain then they actively help their ally with this resource. Losing this ally would have real impact and might persuade Spanish players to help protect US assets during the time of day when US players are not around in number. It just provides tools for the player community to create a geopolitical system. Later on in development it opens doors for all sorts of neat things that could be added such as letters of marquee.

 

I know some of these ideas can seem like an awful lot of work but I think many of them are already in game. We already have "spawn" points for traders and naval vessels they would just need to be relocated. Ports already produce and consume various goods....these numbers would just have to be tied to the actual NPC ships that come in. In the end I'm suggesting creating a game world that remains a sandbox but with some structure and tools that the playerbase can use to create a world that is dynamic and truly impacted in a meaningful way by our efforts.

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btw, a recognition is an easy way of motivating players and making RvR more meanigful. It's a raw idea, however if you were able to give sub-names to regions that you capture, I would bet that eg. a region called "Pellasgos, God of the Sea"  or "Lord Vicious's Lair" would be constantly contested :)

Edited by vazco
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Personally I think one of the things that would pull the current patch together and make it work is open world acceleration away from ship sight silent hunter style. I think the time sink is what is stopping most people. 

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10 minutes ago, Destraex said:

Personally I think one of the things that would pull the current patch together and make it work is open world acceleration away from ship sight silent hunter style. I think the time sink is what is stopping most people. 

I am intrigued on this would work.

How to intercept shipping if time warp would be in place ?

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Hethwill I have discussed this elsewhere. It would work on the premise that once you lose sight of a ship (say for more than 5-10 minutes) they get to warp. But so do you. To warp though they need to be out of sight of any ships. So it would just make the longer journeys at sea for the crafters less time consuming and enable ships to travel the whole map without taking a life time. You would drop out of time compression if any ship was sighted and an alarm would sound. It would then take you 10 minutes to start again.

This would also prevent interceptors from using chat or voice coms to triangulate somebody based on sighting information it would not be possible to pass on instantly in this period. In short anybody not in sight of his fellow interceptors should have no information anyway and only intercept by chance. Thus it follows that interceptors should keep sight of their prey anyway or consider them lost. Ships sightings in nation chat would become far less accurate and the game far faster for those with less time to sink. It would also in effect make the map seem smaller and if the devs want us to travel without the time killing us then this must be done. This in turn would also mean more journeys and more ship building and more population returning. Because things would be doable in a single nights play again. It would also be a huge help for those clanners that log in and then want to fast track to their fleet who are already heading for a mission or territory. We should then actually see the population mobilise a bit more and there would be a tonne more people willing to leave home waters because time allows.

Time compression would obviously be optional and need to be manually started again once dropped from it by a sighting. So those that want to enjoy the games time sink still can. I don't care what it would "look" like in terms of ship bobbing... it's time compression and everybody understands that looks strange. I don't think it would be hard to implement and I reckon the devs should have a crack at it before release... but that is just my opinion of course.

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Time acceleration only works in single player games.

 

As for the new Content Patch...

My only fear is that having a PvP zone will draw in players only at the active time and only to that  designated spot. Imagine the ganking fleets hovering around the PvP zone, not to mention that PvP will barely exist anywhere else on the open world except around this predesignated zone.

Edited by Rramsha
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Destraex, your idea could lower time sink and increase number of engagements - a ship not in "warp" would encounter more ships in warp and vice versa. I just don't know how it would influence immersion. Maybe some animation could handle this.

Another ideas to reduce time sink are ship deliveries and more outposts, or (more complex) joining defending side of a hostility mission through a lobby available from an attacked region.

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This game was really fun from like february-may. 

 

Now it's an example of why "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" is such an important lesson for people to learn. 

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9 hours ago, admin said:

Global events 

  • PVE challenge. New lobby event focused exclusively on killing NPC ships. Players will have limited time to sink as many opponents as they can (on a pre-selected ship). Event will run weeky (or for several days) depending on the testing results. Top 10 players will be rewarded by ship redeemables, upgrades, rare materials and paint customizations. Ship which can be used in events will change every event. 
  • PVP challenge. Open world map events focused exclusively on sinking players. A special area will be designated for PVP events and will run 3 times per day for Far East, EU and US prime times for several hours. Kills (victories) will be counted for players fighting in that zone. Players who gain leaderboard positions in their respective time zones will be rewarded by ship redeemables, upgrades, rare materials and /or paint customizations. Proposed initial locations for pvp challenge: shallow - Bahamas sand bank above Cuba (2 free towns north and south), deep water - hispaniola channel (3 free towns north south and west).

Now This is a good way to do Events, i like the way you guys made possible for everyone participate and have a chance to win. That's a good way to reward the people who play more and consecutvely contribute more, and another step in the right direction is that you guys are given redeemable ships, not redeemable BP. I still think rewarding ships is not a good idea and i dont liked, But everething else i see in the changes i do like very much! :D

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10 hours ago, admin said:

Land in port battles.

Global events

Crew damage changes

Admiralty store.

Other changes

  • We think that fine woods and ship crafting in general forced players to fight less and sail and craft more. The changes we implemented last patch were based on player proposals and we all thought that they will make the crafting more challenging and provide more options for conquest goals. Testing shown that might have just sucked out all time from PVP and increased the risk levels forcing some players to sail safer.

ETA - End of November.

Discuss

Global Events are great, especially for those concerned about having to put in the time to play a sandbox game (which this is supposed to be) and just want to PvP.

I implore you, however, to keep going on the positive changes on the crafting/resources.

The Sandbox aspect is really important. Really grand ships should be really hard to make. There SHOULD be great risk and corrosponding reward. I agree the fine woods thing went a bit too far. But reconsider your previous proposals to eliminate unrealistic teleporting ships and Delivery to Freeports that ruins any profitability from trade interdiction.

I can transport a fortune from one end of the map to the other with NO RISK. Whats the point in a pirate/privateer patrol or a blockade?

If players want a MOBA, give them one in Global Events, but you promised a realistic sandbox and I suspect that despite the moaning and whining, this will be the winning long-term formula.

 

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Conquest mode port battles with onshore objectives. I immediately thought of lobby entry to eliminate the having to sail for hours to get there, logoff port camping issues. But then got to the part about PB position depending on OW - how does that fit in with defensive screening? Is it reinforcement ticket or victory point oriented? So many questions spring to mind. Just have to be patient I guess.

Global events with awards - hmmmm. Three times a day may be overkill and stifle other PvE/PvP. Maybe once a day with rotating start times?

Crew damage limitation. Entirely reasonable though balancing of ball/grape damage vs crew still needed.

Admiralty store currency (quatloons?) - assuming this is in addition to the current gold/xp award? Suggest adding exceptional ship redemption for a hefty whack of quatloons. Equivalent of meritorious captains awarded command of exceptional ship by Admiralty for outstanding performance. Leaves me out but c'est la vie.

Fine wood adjustment/elimination? Flip/flopping isn't good but the fine woods did impose a drudge factor probably best forgotten as a lesson learned. Maybe incorporate Admiralty quatloons as a component into regular crafting of exceptional ships too?

ROE changes - if battles are to remain open for a period of time for late arrivals, *please* correct so they spawn into the instance at the perimeter, not the middle. Please limit battle screen camping to 5 minutes. Please send surviving defenders to nearest friendly port or 5 minutes sailing in that direction, whichever is less.

Looking forward to testing the changes - appears to be a sound adjustment in course,

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12 hours ago, admin said:

It is not logical that all crew can be killed by ball or grape (for some of the sailors are on the masts and yards). We have returned the old sea trials thresholds of 30 and 10%.

The ships from Frig to Trinc, did not check the Endy and Indef.

These ships have relatively high sailing crew requirement.  Surprise requires 65, and Frig 110.  That is pretty decent jump right there.  Surp sailing crew % is 27, and for example for the Frig this is 39%, and Trinc 42%.  For a Buc this % is 20.

30% limit could work, just pointing out that notice the crew requirement differences as well.

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What about AI improvement ? Still "delayed due to other priorities" ? 

Still no AI aggressiveness ?

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what about the bp, will continue being owners of the special ships a privileged few?

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Thanks Admin!

I know it was not mentioned for a Long time. But i would love to see some plans for pirates mechanics. 

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On 15/11/2016 at 5:15 AM, admin said:

Captains

We would like to share the features we are working on. Features are to be delivered in the next content patch.

During this early access we have found that some features that are realistic (and demanded by players for testing) are later found out to be less fun than the previous implementation. Early access is the only time to test all ideas and cut them if they are not fun. So hang on there - we will be fast and ruthless in cutting things that don't work. 

----------

ETA - End of November.

Discuss

First, I will answer to your post directly.

  • Instead of tower and BR difference requirements, there will be 3 objectives.
  • Controlling objectives gives your side points. If you played conquest mode in Battlefiled 3 you will understand how it works.
  • 3 objectives will be at certain distance from each other sometimes forcing fleets to split up and coordinate. Faster, lighter ships importance will increase.
    Please don't make port battles arcady like those Battlefield/Call of Duty pub matches. Anything OW related should be as realistic as possible.
    I never understood BR in the battle. Less and worse ships will naturally have worse chances of winning. Whats more to implement? Why do you need BR for that?
    Re: actual port battle mechanics.
    Make port battle as a 2 stage process each has 1 hour timer:
    - First there is an open waters battle between the opposing teams, then there is a battle near the fort;
    - Make 5 minutes break between those stages allowing both teams to regroup and fresh ships to join / switch;
    - During the 2nd phase make forts hitting hard stationary targets, forcing ships to be constantly moving (approaching and leaving after broadside);
    - Make forts visibly destroyable after each hit, critical hits will destroy cannons. When fort is completely destroyed or all cannons are dead its the end of the fort;
    - Remove crossed swords near ports as a join measure. Instead make very large circle (like a size of a full square on a map) that is in semi visible distance from the contested port. This circle is for the attacking team. Extra ships needs to be remained there in order to join the 2nd phase of the port battle. Defenders circle will be outside the actual port (just as large). No ships can be attacked within those circles (all attacks both ways will be canceled).
    This way you will have your sandbox port battle mechanics so you will give a chance for everyone to join and take part in.

     
  • The only drawback found in testing is this - land changes combat completely and in some cases will slow them down depending on the harbor. Some harbors will be very hard to capture due to their natural composition.
    Some ports were very hard to capture historically due to their positioning and natural cover. That is OK! However, each port battle instance will have to be done manually and polished based on feedback, so even the "hard to capture" ports are still possible to capture. DON'T WALK AWAY from something that doesn't work immediately, but polish and adjust. Please persevere the mechanic and work on its polishing until its working properly and makes sense. Do not jump from one game mechanic to another. Make decision, stick to it and make it work.

     
  • Port entry will change and both attackers and defenders will spawn based on their OW position. We don't know about the wind yet but maybe the wind should be taken from the OW forcing attackers to carefully choose the time for attack.
    Please NO. See above. Making spawn like from OW will cause too much of a mess. Port battles needs to be more organized events. Those people that started the PB needs to be able to be in charge. If you want us to use different ships in the port battle for different tasks let us choose, deploy and position ships on the battlefield. Right now there is no tools to control the port battle, though its the largest battle event by current battle mechanics. We need proper battle commanding and organizational tools. We need minimap with an ability to click on it and beacon for the rest of the team to see just like in WOT.

     
  • PVP challenge. Open world map events focused exclusively on sinking players. A special area will be designated for PVP events and will run 3 times per day for Far East, EU and US prime times for several hours. Kills (victories) will be counted for players fighting in that zone. Players who gain leaderboard positions in their respective time zones will be rewarded by ship redeemables, upgrades, rare materials and /or paint customizations. Proposed initial locations for pvp challenge: shallow - Bahamas sand bank above Cuba (2 free towns north and south), deep water - hispaniola channel (3 free towns north south and west).
    Its good that you bring leaderboard, but... at the current stage when your player base is sinking like a burning trader its just a waste of your time and frankly ours too. Instead of leaderboard please do the following:
    - Statistics of each ship. Start with victories only - which ships this particular ship has sunk. FFS, please remove duras. If ship was sunk, its gooone, so its statistics;
    - Player stats. Which ships and how many has this player sunk and how many lost;
    - If you can, please create automated killboard like in EvE. This will sort all your stats issues and future requests. Make it accessible from online website rather than in game. That is all you need and will serve you for years before something else needs to be done. Save your time!


 

  • It is not logical that all crew can be killed by ball or grape (for some of the sailors are on the masts and yards). We have returned the old sea trials thresholds of 30 and 10%. After you kill 70% of enemy crew it will be harder and harder to inflict more casualties. After losses reach 90% crew damage becomes impossible. The cannonball damage is still under review.
    This is good. I first was against your crew damages implemented in the October patch, but when you reduced damages it start making more sense. However... again please don't walk away from what is working. I suggest to introduce your 30-10% to each area of the ship. Like Stern racking can damage maximum 75% of the crew. While first racking is devastating, this number will be reduced with each racking and comply with your 30-10% mechanic. So make this per area of the ship damage based, rather than the whole ship based. Again, whatever you do, please DO NOT WALK AWAY if you get negative response. This is good enough to polish and make work so please stick to it.


 

  • Brace is added for testing. Brace allows you to give a take cover command to your crew that will act a s crew shock severely limiting crew casualties, but blocking some of the actions you could do while you are on brace. Brace will stop reload, affect firing ability, stop repairs and water pumping and rudder usage. You will still be able to use yards. 
    This is GREAT NEWS! While I don't like such a heavy penalties on Bracing function, this is a great start! Thank you! DO NOT WALK AWAY from this. Please work with us, lets us collaborate and provide feedback, then polish until its working!

 

  • New currency will be added and will be granted for PvP victories and successful port attack or defense. In its basic implementation players will be able to use this currency to buy rare materials and upgrades.
    This will get you nowhere. In fact it will destroy the game for the casual guy, while that is the guy who is making the most of revenue for you.
    Hard core guys will get better and harder to beat, leaving no chance for a casual player catch up and compete. I can't stress this enough - everyone must be able to get same chances to gain any sorts of materials to build means to play the game. You are running into dangers of creating a dead corner that The Division got itself into. There is no way fresh players will have a chance against hard core due to gear OP differences.
    Instead make Admiralty Store reward players with rare paints and customization slots that gives looks, but no advantages in gameplay. Also make Admiralty Store Credits (ASC) to be available to be purchased with real cash. Casual player will be able to get those by paying you more and hard core players will be able to get those by in-game means. If you can't implement customization now, then don't go hard about it. You already have paint schemes. Make those as a reward bought by ASC currency (whether bought for real cash or achieved in the game). This will show you if the idea is working, but please do not give any in-game advantages for such achievements. The in-game advantages needs to be gained through gameplay that is fair to everyone. Discovery, quests, crafting etc. Do not sell those for cash or you will get your community to turn on you.

     
  • We think that fine woods and ship crafting in general forced players to fight less and sail and craft more. The changes we implemented last patch were based on player proposals and we all thought that they will make the crafting more challenging and provide more options for conquest goals. Testing shown that might have just sucked out all time from PVP and increased the risk levels forcing some players to sail safer.
    I strongly disagree. You got all the reasons for player inactivity wrongly. The reason why we fight less is because you have created less Points of Conflict (POC). Before we were pulling flags, it was known approximately where the flag carrier is, there were more port battles etc. With player base dropping its getting harder and harder to find pvp. More sailing should naturally produce more engagements, but not it the case of this patch because you have spread all the conflict zone too wide. Lets see what you have done for crafting. You have created regions with special abilities. Some so far distant that I simply become too lazy to spend my short gaming time to sail just so I can craft a ship.
    So again you are on the right track, DO NOT WALK AWAY from this, stick to it, but polish and work with community to improve CURRENT mechanics.
    My proposition for the current mechanics that should deliver more activities and player interactions:
    - Remove labour hours, Instead implement real time labour timer that requires to build the ship  or anything else for that matter. When you craft, create crafting orders and let them be crafted real time even while you are offline. 1st rates needs to take days to be completed. Crafting level as well as officer perks and level of shipyard reduces real hours needed to craft anything;
    - Reason why we don't build green, blue or purple is because once you get access to fine timber its a waste of resource to build anything else than gold. Keep colors of the ships (you said you going to remove them in February). Instead introduce different quality of woods. Grey is a common timber, Green is good timer, Blue is fine timer, Purple is rare timber, Gold is exceptional. This way player will craft what they have materials for! Make all drops rarer as the quality goes up, so gold drops are VERY rare. If you want a better quality you will have to use better quality wood. Simple. It will work. It will make use of other quality ships too;
    - Harvesting timber will have all color drops grey to gold, but higher quality will have progressively rarer and smaller drops. Simple and effective. It will work. Example: Single building harvest gave 500 Live Oak (common), 150 Green, 50 Fine, 15 Purple and 5 Gold. Here is your choices for crafting right there. This will make gold ships really rare and have that wow effect your were looking for;
    - Remove regional bonus where you craft the ship. Introduce regional bonus for the resources. For example Live Oak that is harvested in Georgia country will give Built Strength bonus of that region, while Live Oak harvested in Louisiane country will give Strong Hull bonus. You want specific bonus, get the timber from THAT region and build anywhere you like. This is simple and make sense. This is also give chance to people from smaller nations to build what they want. The current crafting mechanic makes no historical or common sense at all. It basically says that various characteristics ships where not possible to built on the same shipyard, which is nonsense isn't? The right people with the right tools and materials could built required characteristics ships in any place that had the right facilities;
    - Right now to craft 1st rate you need 400 fine timber (200 of each type for all bonuses applied) that takes nearly 2 weeks of gathering or 1 week between two accounts. Because of that no one will sell you any fine timber or if they will the price will have to be 10-15 million gold per 200 which no one will pay. This ruins your fine woods trading idea. Instead make a cluster of ports in one area that produces one type of timber. The whole country or maybe even two-tree countries in the same area (not just a single port) produces same type of timber. To get that specific bonus this country will be THE ONLY place to get it creating a conflict zone. Allow players from different nation to harvest there as well running this as illegal "smuggling operation". I will get to Nation Influence level later, but  in short higher Nation Influence in the zone will allow to have higher level buildings to be built, thus allowing for higher production rates as well as higher drop chances of better quality woods.
    Example: French smuggler having harvesting timber on English territory will be limited to have level 1 buildings only having low level of harvesting. Plus taking the risk of smuggling harvested materials out of the port. This gives people with no alts to actually have a chance to play the game and gain same resources as people with multiple accounts. This is still gives great disadvantage if your nation does not own the area. Simple and effective;
    - For gold ships to have that "wow" effect the quality of the ship needs to be visible to other players somehow. You could generally tell the quality of the ship from observing it in the spyglass. No need to see the bonuses, but color of the ship is sufficient. As per above reply regarding statistics for each ship make those ship statistics visible in the OW as well as the quality color. This will give pride for the owner and fear to the enemy magnifying your sought after "wow" effect. Make players value their in-game assets and they will stick with the game for a long time
     

 

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COUNTER PROPOSITIONS

I. GENERAL NOTES ON PATCHES
1. There is a solid amount of work done on patches and a notable lack of work on polishing. You need deeper understanding of the problem of a current given mechanic before you jump to another. You need more work done on polishing what you have now instead of jumping around from one extreme to another. This way you will achieve nothing, just drive players away. You can't make everyone happy, there is no perfect system that will make everybody a friend as everyone have own expectations, however any well polished gameplay mechanics will keep interest even among those who were opposing it at the beginning. Make decision, stick to it, let us collaborate, make it work.
You are on the right track. Polish what you have. The last patch was an asset to this game. Don't make it a liability.
2. You need to urgently introduce conflict zones. Be it resources, points of interest, 24 hour spawn for a single specific drop in the same area, whatever, but if you dont want your player base to die from boredom bring conflict to the game.

II. OPEN WORLD CONQUESTS
1. Region conquest mechanics. Main goal is to allow smaller nations to be more competitive as well as making it more involving and interesting for attackers and defenders. Right now concentrate on actual port battle mechanics. Any travel to the port battle temporary replace with direct teleport, ala SWTOR queue for PVP match. This is to stop player ganking those who is trying to make it to the port battle. There are fewer PBs nowadays. Let us test them without being intercepted, then make small patch and rework travel to PB and entering PB battle mechanics;
2. Remove hostility. Instead in order to take the whole region make us fight for each port. In each country give some amount of shallows to be taken that opens opportunity to attack deep. So the conquest is gradual and there are number of port battle fought. When all ports are taken, then you can attack capital. Port battles are set by the attacker. Time is set by the attacker when they going to attack the port, but minimum 24 hours is given to defender to prepare;
3. Instead of Hostility introduce Nation Influence in the given region. Nation influence is built in the same manner as Hostility, but can only be done in the region that already belongs to your nation. There is 6 levels of Nation Influence (NI) where 0 (zero) is none and level 5 is the highest. Taking the whole region will give your nation flag to the region and set its influence to Zero. Zero NI means there are only basic level buildings can be built. Each level allows higher level buildings to be built. Higher NI will automatically upgrade Forts and Fort defenses. NI level also affects NPC patrolling fleet in the area. Working as a nation will  raise NI level and make this area harder to conquest in the future;
4. Players needs to be able to select if they want to do normal missions of missions that affect NI. When doing NI missions the activity becomes visible on the map (represented as local NPC spies passing on the info). Missions approximate locations become visible too. Visibility also affects traders NI missions. Make all Influence missions (combat and trading) a whole lot more profitable to make it worth the risk. Because being visible on the map NI missions become a lot more dangerous and require convoys and encourage team work or hiring protection;
5. Freshly capped region should have no Forts as current level of NI in the area is Zero. Gaining NI in the area will rebuilt damaged Forts and reinforce defenses;

III. OPEN WORLD INTERACTIONS
1. LoT (Level of Threat) should be introduced based on your ship's BR and your recent activities, thus trader ships should generate very little LoT;
2. Please remove those horrible fort defenses around ports. National regions (countries) needs to have NPC fleet patrols that sail on specific route around the region.  Higher NI in the area more patrols there is and tougher they are. Level 5 of National Influence will create 5 NPC patrols in the country area. Those NPC patrols should attack enemy ships if their LoT is rendered to be significant enough. Higher LoT more likely will attract a NPC patrol when they see you;
3. Unlawful actions (such as pirate activity) will temporary raise LoT towards given nation. More unlawful actions = more LoT to the point when NPC patrol will actually start looking for you and sail to your location deliberately. LoT will be gradually reduced when time pass. No matter how high your ships or fleet BR is it wont generate enough LoT to make NPC deliberately come looking for you, but your actions will. NPC patrol might still attack you when they see you;

IV. CRAFTING (to most of it I have replied above directly)
1. Level of player buildings needs to be regulated by level of National Influence in the area. Level 5 NI will allow to build level 5 buildings and shipyards;
2. As mentioned above remove labor hours. Instead introduce real timer of completion. At the end of the day it will cost same real time (more or less) as generating required labor hours, but instead it will be the actual crafting timer. Nothing should be crafted instantly. To make this work, allow to create crafting orders, so players can make orders of what they want to craft and it will be crafted even while they are offline (just like labor hours are generated offline);
3. Each Crafting level of player will reduce crating timer needed to craft anything;
4. As mentioned before each level of NI allows to build higher level of shipyard. Each level of shipyard reduces crafting timer needed to craft anything. Each level of shipyard also allows to build next quality level of products, e.g. Level 1 Shipyard allows to build only Common ships (grey), while Level 5 Shipyard allows to build Exceptional ships.

 

I have more propositions, but need to think more on them so they work together with everything else as a system that is driven to attract players and keep them in the game.

 

Taking time to write this feedback, I would appreciate your response or some sort of indication towards how you feel on the above, thus letting me know if I should write more in the future or just leave it.

 

Thanks and regards,

[BLACK] Koltes
pvp2, Pirate nation

 

 

Edited by koltes
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9.97 looks good to me lets get on and test it:D

Edited by tankgame
9.97.not 9.96

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